Lions vs. Ticats Sept. 22, 2017

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B.C.FAN
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Thu Sep 21, 2017 8:29 am

The Lions have made just two changes to their starting lineup this week for Friday's rare 8 p.m. home game against Hamilton but they're both significant.

On defence, Alex Bazzie, signed just this week after failed NFL tryouts, starts at his old rush end position ahead of Ken Boatright, who showed flashes of potential last week in Calgary. It will be interesting to see if Bazzie can generate more pressure than Boatright or Josh Shirley have delivered from that position since DeQuin Evans was injured after a strong start to the season.

On offence, Kelvin Palmer returns at right tackle. David Foucault, who started at that position for the first time last week, is listed as a backup O-lineman. That gives the Lions three national starters on the O-line instead of four and it likely means that Nick Moore, the fourth international receiver, will be scratched.

Keynan Parker is also added to the roster from the 6-game injured list and will back up Anthony Gaitor at field corner. Many of us had hoped to see Parker as the starter at that position, which has been the Lions' biggest defensive weakness this year.

It's hard to know what to expect from either team. Jonathon Jennings looked great in relief of Travis Lulay in the Lions' last home game against Montreal but was terrible last week in Calgary. Travis Lulay threw for a record 436 yards in the Lions' victory in Hamilton in July. The Ticats have given up a league-worst average of 34.6 points and 414 yards of net offence this year but they are 2-1 since June Jones replaced Kent Austin as head coach. Jonathon Jennings is 3-0 against Hamilton in his career but the Lions generated just 207 net yards on offence last week, their lowest total in two years, as Jennings continually tried to throw into coverage to Bryan Burnham and Manny Arceneaux while ignoring his outside receivers.

The B.C. defence is strong enough to keep them in any game as long as they defend against the deep pass. The Lions rank last in the league in that stat, thanks largely to blown coverages on the wide side of the field.

The key to the game for Jennings will be to cut down on turnovers and distribute the ball to all his receivers. The Lions are last in the league with a minus-9 turnover ratio and Jennings is the eighth-ranked starting quarterback, once again leading the league in interceptions despite missing nearly half of the Lions 12 games, and has only been accurate this year on passes of less than 9 yards. The Lions will go only as far as Jennings will take them and they won't go anywhere if he doesn't regain the confidence and arm strength he showed last year.

Here's a link to the Lions' depth chart and roster for this game.

There are also a lot of interesting stats in this week's Game Notes at bclions.com. This one is particularly important:
Good starts vital: This season it has been critical for BC to get off to a good start. In the 3 games when they have led after the 1st
Quarter they are 3-0 (and 11-3 over the last two years), but they are 1-6 when trailing after one quarter. Similarly, the Lions are 6-0
when ahead or tied after the 1st half, and 0-6 when trailing after 30:00.
"I think [Fred Fateri] was like a lot of people who watch football, hockey or any professional sport on television. They sit there and think they could coach better than the professional. Some people really think that." - Bob Ackles, The Water Boy

B.C.FAN
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Thu Sep 21, 2017 6:23 pm

Ben Kuzma interviewed Jonathon Jennings about the Calgary game and what he needs to do better against Hamilton. Some excerpts:
“You have to find a way to make things work and not be too risky with the football. Obviously, we had trouble with that (against Calgary) and you have to make sure you’re taking what they’re giving you and getting the ball out quick.”

Jennings threw an interception in the first series against the Stampeders and when the Lions went away from a successful running game, they were fodder for a ferocious pass rush and an air-tight secondary that limited Manny Arceneaux to one reception while Bryan Burnham had three.

The tale of the receiving tape was running back Chris Rainey being the relief valve for a harried Jennings and winding up with five catches for just 26 yards when the Lions were forced into a two-back set.

“You’re always trying to do what works,” added Jennings. “Getting some yards and productivity out of it (two-back set) is a good reminder than you can still move the football.

“They (Stampeders) were dropping deep in coverage just taking away primary guys and we had to use our running backs to pick up some yards.”
Kuzma: Lions' Jennings needs to drum up inner beast to topple Ticats

I give Jennings a lot of credit for admitting his mistakes and striving to get better. He is a young quarterback who is still learning the game. In the past when he has been afraid of throwing interceptions his tendency was to hold the ball too long. He recognizes that he not only has to protect the ball but also take what the defence is giving him and get rid of the ball quickly. I'm optimistic that we'll see a better performance this week. That would help build his confidence going into the bye week, with a stretch of four crucial games to follow against Ottawa, Winnipeg, Edmonton and Winnipeg again.
"I think [Fred Fateri] was like a lot of people who watch football, hockey or any professional sport on television. They sit there and think they could coach better than the professional. Some people really think that." - Bob Ackles, The Water Boy

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David
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Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:39 pm

Starting two imports again on the O-line is a bit of head scratcher.

I think the club is so wigged out about Jonathon hanging onto the ball too long and trying to give him as much time in the pocket as possible....but we really could use Nick Moore as extra weapon. Honestly, if we're not going to use Moore, we should trade him. Hamilton and Montreal need receiving help.

Personally, I would go with:

Steward LT
Vaillancourt LG
Husband C
Fabian RG
Palmer RT

Dress Johnson as the back-up in case Steward or Palmer go down, and Foucault as back-up guard.


DH :cool:
Please sell the team, Mr. Braley.

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WestCoastJoe
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Thu Sep 21, 2017 8:16 pm

David wrote:
Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:39 pm
Starting two imports again on the O-line is a bit of head scratcher.

I think the club is so wigged out about Jonathon hanging onto the ball too long and trying to give him as much time in the pocket as possible....but we really could use Nick Moore as extra weapon. Honestly, if we're not going to use Moore, we should trade him. Hamilton and Montreal need receiving help.

Personally, I would go with:

Steward LT
Vaillancourt LG
Husband C
Fabian RG
Palmer RT

Dress Johnson as the back-up in case Steward or Palmer go down, and Foucault as back-up guard.


DH :cool:
I agree with that OL lineup, David.

We have had musical chairs all year with the OL, DL and secondary.
John Madden's Team Policies: Be on time. Pay attention. Play like hell on game day.

Jimmy Johnson's Game Keys: Protect the ball. Make plays.

Walter Payton's Advice to Kids: Play hard. Play fair. Have fun.

B.C.FAN
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Thu Sep 21, 2017 9:54 pm

David wrote:
Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:39 pm
Starting two imports again on the O-line is a bit of head scratcher.

I think the club is so wigged out about Jonathon hanging onto the ball too long and trying to give him as much time in the pocket as possible....but we really could use Nick Moore as extra weapon. Honestly, if we're not going to use Moore, we should trade him. Hamilton and Montreal need receiving help.

Personally, I would go with:

Steward LT
Vaillancourt LG
Husband C
Fabian RG
Palmer RT

Dress Johnson as the back-up in case Steward or Palmer go down, and Foucault as back-up guard.


DH :cool:
I've been wanting all season to see the four international receivers on the field together and integrated into the offence. The coaches don't see that as a priority, which should have been evident from the start of training camp when Moore was listed as a backup to Marco Iannuzzi. The coaches see Moore as primarily roster depth who can step in of one of the other three internationals is hurt. I think we're all missing out on what could be an explosive offence instead of another heavily scouted Manny and Bryan show, which defences are focused on stopping.

Starting four nationals on the O-line is viable this year. I didn't think Foucault underperformed in his first start compared to how Palmer has played, but Wally has made clear his preference for starting two internationals on the O-line and that's likely what we'll see most of the way. Vaillancourt is injured and Johnson has been playing well at LT so Steward will likely stay at guard for the foreseeable future. Ideally, if Vaillancourt returns, I would go with:

Steward LT
Vaillancourt LG
Husband C
Fabian RG
Johnson RT

Foucault and Jones would be backups. Foucault plays TE in the jumbo unit and is able to back up guard and tackle positions.

Dressing Johnson or Palmer as a backup tackle isn't going to happen. Two of the other international backups (Moore, Burnett, Boatright and Jackson) already need to be scratched this week to meet the ratio. A third international would need to be dropped from the roster to activate a backup international tackle who can't play special teams.
"I think [Fred Fateri] was like a lot of people who watch football, hockey or any professional sport on television. They sit there and think they could coach better than the professional. Some people really think that." - Bob Ackles, The Water Boy

DanoT
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 5:34 am

I wouldn't be against using two imports on the O line if both or even one was any good, but they are probably the two worst INT O linemen in the CFL. :bang:

As far as moving guys around on the O line, that is the norm with Wally/Dorazio. And of course Wally/Washington do the same thing with DBs. :dizzy:

B.C.FAN
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:40 am

In case anyone was wondering:
"I think [Fred Fateri] was like a lot of people who watch football, hockey or any professional sport on television. They sit there and think they could coach better than the professional. Some people really think that." - Bob Ackles, The Water Boy

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David
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:46 pm

Wait. A closed BC Place roof on a nice, sunny autumn day with no rain in sight? Shocking! :shock:

Seriously. What is the over/under for games in a season that the roof is actually open? 2? 3? What a farce.


DH :cool:
Please sell the team, Mr. Braley.

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BC 1988
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 2:55 pm

ROOF WILL BE ___?___ 😎
as of right now on the game day page. Very disorganised since the tweet was over 4 hours ago.
I agree, it's ridiculous using every excuse to keep it closed (ooh 13C is too chilly)..

I think the participants in MASCOT SOCCER! would have appreciated it being cooler.
https://www.bclions.com/lionsgameday/
Sekeres/Price just made it their poll question.
http://www.tsn.ca/radio/vancouver-1040-i-1410
Donnie and the Moj had made the "ideal time for a sporting event start time" their poll question. 7:30 got over half the votes.

B.C.FAN
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:36 pm

BC 1988 wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 2:55 pm
ROOF WILL BE ___?___ 😎
as of right now on the game day page. Very disorganised since the tweet was over 4 hours ago.
I agree, it's ridiculous using every excuse to keep it closed (ooh 13C is too chilly)..

I think the participants in MASCOT SOCCER! would have appreciated it being cooler.
https://www.bclions.com/lionsgameday/
Sekeres/Price just made it their poll question.
http://www.tsn.ca/radio/vancouver-1040-i-1410
Donnie and the Moj had made the "ideal time for a sporting event start time" their poll question. 7:30 got over half the votes.
Interesting I just voted in the poll question on the closed roof. The results are running roughly 50-50, which just shows it's a no-win situation. I supported the closed roof. (Sorry, David.) I like to be comfortable in my jersey and not wear a jacket or sweatshirt to the game if I can help it.

As for the start time, 7:30 is probably ideal, especially for a weeknight, but I grew up with 8 p.m. starts in the Empire Stadium days and love having extra time to get downtown without my seatmates having to leave work early and fight rush-hour traffic from the Valley.
"I think [Fred Fateri] was like a lot of people who watch football, hockey or any professional sport on television. They sit there and think they could coach better than the professional. Some people really think that." - Bob Ackles, The Water Boy

TheLionKing
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 3:58 pm

What a waste of taxpayer's money to have a retractable roof and to keep it closed. The so professed Legend should be happy.

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CardiacKid
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 4:50 pm

BC 1988 wrote:
Fri Sep 22, 2017 2:55 pm
ROOF WILL BE ___?___ 😎
as of right now on the game day page. Very disorganised since the tweet was over 4 hours ago.
I agree, it's ridiculous using every excuse to keep it closed (ooh 13C is too chilly)..

I think the participants in MASCOT SOCCER! would have appreciated it being cooler.
Yes BC Place, spare a thought for the mascots sweating in their foam suits.

Then spare a thought for the poor fans in section 246 getting subjected to my sweaty dance number for the "Shake Your Bumper" cam.

B.C.FAN
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:21 pm

It looks like Nick Moore and Buddy Jackson are the scratches tonight. Ken Boatright stays in the lineup as a backup DE.
"I think [Fred Fateri] was like a lot of people who watch football, hockey or any professional sport on television. They sit there and think they could coach better than the professional. Some people really think that." - Bob Ackles, The Water Boy

TheLionKing
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 7:55 pm

Looking to be a very sparse crowd

TheLionKing
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Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:12 pm

Sack by Bazzie on first play

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